VBA Cells Function – Cells, Worksheet.Cells, & Range.Cells

Written by

Mel Jenkins

Reviewed by

Steve Rynearson

Last updated on April 1, 2024

This article will demonstrate how to use the VBA Cells Function.

The VBA Cells Function allows you to do two things:

  1. Reference all cells in a worksheet
  2. Reference a specific cell

This is similar to the VBA Range Object.

Syntax of VBA Cells

The traditional syntax of the VBA Cells function is:

cells syntax

This type of syntax is called R1C1 syntax as opposed to the A1 syntax of a column letter and then a row number which is used when using the Range Object in Excel VBA.

Therefore, to select cell D3 we can type the following code:

Cells(3, 4).Select

this will move the Excel pointer to cell D3 in your worksheet.

If we wish to use the cells function to populate a specific cell with some text, and then format the cell, we can write some code like this example below:

Sub PopulateCell()
   Cells(2, 2) = "Sales Analysis for 2022"
   Cells(2, 2).Font.Bold = True
   Cells(2, 2).Font.Name = "Arial"
   Cells(2, 2).Font.Size = 12
End Sub

This will populate cell B2 with text and then format the cell.


If we wish to select the entire worksheet using the Cells Function, we can type the following:


This will select all the cells in Sheet 1 in the same way that pressing CTRL + A on the keyboard would do so.


We can also use the cells function to refer to a specific cell within a range of cells.

Range("A5:B10").Cells(2, 2).Select

This will actually refer to the cell that has the address of  B6 in the original range (A5:B10) as B6 is in the second row and second column of that range.

Looping through a Range with the Cells Function

Now that we understand the Cells Function, we can use it to perform some tasks in VBA Loops.

For example, if we want to format a range of cells depending on their value, we can loop through the range using the cells function.

Sub FormatCells()
   Dim x As Integer
   For x = 1 To 10
      If Cells(x, 1) > 5 Then
         Cells(x, 1).Interior.Color = vbRed
      End If
   Next x
End Sub

This code will start at cell A1 and loop through to cell A10, changing the background color to red if the value in the cell is greater than 5.

If we wish to take this to another level, to loop through columns as well as rows, we can add in a further loop to the code to increase the columns that the loops looks at.

Sub FormatCells()
   Dim x As Integer
   Dim y As Integer
   For x = 1 To 10
      For y = 1 To 5
         If Cells(x, y) > 5 Then
            Cells(x, y).Interior.Color = vbRed
         End If
      Next y
   Next x
End Sub

Now the loop will start at cell A5 but will continue all the way through to cell E10.

We can also use the Cells function to loop through a specific range of cells

Sub LoopThrouRange()
   Dim rng As Range
   Dim x As Integer
   Dim y As Integer
   Set rng = Range("B2:D8")
   For x = 1 To 7
      For y = 1 To 3
         If rng.Cells(x, y) > 5 Then
            rng.Cells(x, y).Interior.Color = vbRed
         End If
      Next y
   Next x
End Sub

This loop would only look inside the range B2:D8, and then loop through the rows and columns of that particular range. Remember that when the range is supplied to the Cells Function, the Cells Function will only look within that range and not at the entire worksheet.

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